PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Since March, we’ve all had to get creative when it comes to connecting with friends and family.

People have been taking advantage of the outdoors as much as possible during this time of limited contact.

Here in Western Pennsylvania, we are lucky to be surrounded by so many great state parks and outdoor spaces in Pittsburgh or just outside the city.

KDKA’s Celina Pompeani spoke with Charissa Sedor, a producer at the Buhl Planetarium at the Carnegie Science Center.

Sedor says that stargazing has been a really popular outdoor activity during the Coronavirus pandemic.

Recently, an uptick in stargazing seemed to be taking place due to Comet NEOWISE, which made its closest approach to Earth last week, but Charissa says you can still see it now.

“So it will now be heading away from Earth, and getting a little bit dimmer, but will still be visible with stronger binoculars and telescopes for sure. If you have a camera that can take a lot of exposure, you’ll be able to see it that way as well,” Sedor said.

Pittsburgh-based photographer Dave DiCello captured spectacular images of Comet NEOWISE from Moraine State Park, where Charissa visited as well.

“I’ve gone out to a couple of parks myself and I’ve been seeing a lot of families out there — definitely a lot more than usual. So it’s really been amazing to kind off see how many people are actually going out at night too look at the stars,” Sedor said.

Now, you don’t need to visit a destination like Moraine State Park to stargaze — you can do it right from your backyard!

All you really need are your eyes and maybe a camping chair, a comfy blanket, and a camera. You don’t need a lot to enjoy this activity.

If you have a telescope or binoculars, that’s even better.

The Carnegie Science Center has been open and they offer amazing planetarium shows and laser shows that you can check out as well.

Celina Pompeani